There are 2 christmas markets in Mannheim in Advent.: one is around the water tower. This one is nice, but I prefer the other one on Kapuzinerplanken. There are more craftsmen. What I like most are the Santa Claus made of Chocolate. But you also get them in the chocolate shop, one of my favourite shops in Mannheim.
A place my family enjoys is...
A place my family enjoys is 'Buffalo Park.' That's the name we Americans call it--I don't know what the Germans call it. It's a large wooded area with many biking/walking/horse trails. We like to take our son to many of the large play areas throughout the circuit of trails. My favorite part is the warthog farm. They're just so ugly they're cute...
An international town
After the end of the 30-years war in 17th century, Mannheim was an almost empty place. Prince Elector Karl Ludwig decided, that anyone who was honest was allowed to settle in Mannheim, no matter which nationality or which religion they had. This was an unusually liberal idea for this time and it worked.In the middle of the 17th century German, French,Dutch, Polish people were living in Mannheim.
The picture shows Karl Ludwig welcoming French immigrants to Mannheim.
Since Mannheim is getting ready for a birthday party in 2007, many things are under construction right now or getting thouroughly cleaned. The castle is one of them. It is a large castle, not especially beautiful, just very big. They say it has 400 rooms and 2000 windows, I don't know if it's true. It might well be and certainly the princes in 18th century didn't have to think about who'd clean it.
The building of the castle began in the reign of Charles Philip, who decided to leave Heidelberg after a lot of problems he had there. His successor, Charles Theodore, finished it.
Today the castle houses the university of Mannheim, except for a few rooms in the middle part. There is a small museum , but because of the construction it has been closed for some time now. it is supposed to open again next year, for the anniversary of being a town for 400 years.
Update May 2007:
The outside of the castle is still a mess, construction is going on, visitors have to walk a long way around the yard, partly over dirt and gravel. But at least inside they're finished, they're selling tickets now (unlike in April, even after the official grand opening) and I managed to go and see the new museum.
It's been worth the hassle! While before there were just three rooms with very few items on display, there is now a lot to see. You get audiophones and can walk through the rooms
in your own pace.
Furniture, silverware, paintings, tapestry, everything is explained and gives a great introduction to what life was like at the court. One of my favourites was the blue saloon, in which all the walls are covered by blue damask, another one the music room.
Entrance fee is 5 Euro for adults and 2.50 Euro for children
Open Tuesday to Sunday from 10 am to 5 pm.
Check out Mannheim
"I like to be here, but don't expect too much..."
Mannheim isn't so much appreciated by tourists compared to close-by Heidelberg although it is quite pretty.
What I really like about Mannheim is that it's so cosmopolitan. You have all sorts of cultural events here and you can get good international food for little money (which you hardly find in Frankfurt...)!
Mannheim is also great for shopping!
The Wasserturm - an old water tower in the centre of town. The giant wheel isn't always there unfortunately....
I went to the Louisenpark with my friend Marion on a sunny day, that was really nice. It's a great place for kids to play or to have a picnic. You also get to see some animals and exotic plants. There's also an authentic Chinese tea house in the park. To enter the park you pay a few Euros, but I thought it was worth it.